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ZAMM Fanatic
2,730 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I rode my bike bone-stock for over a year. Now I seem to be going nuts, adding farkles.

Farkle: Accessories selected by a motorcycle owner to enhance safety, performance, or comfort.... (per Wikipedia)

Is it the process of adding farkles that makes a bike feel like "yours" instead of a generic bike?

First for me was a gimbaled cupholder hung off the handlebars. Well, that didn't work so well with taller water bottles (which blew over in the slipstream) so I had to re-design it, create a taller cup, wrap it in aluminized bubble wrap insulation. It looks like redneck engineering but keeps my water cold (a chunk of ice often remains) to the bottom of a frozen bottle even in summer heat.

Next was a USB charging port. Got tired of the little adapters rattling their way out of the cigarette lighter plug; 2 hours later you discover your phone or Ipod STILL isn't' charged. And I was having to split the cig plug 2-ways for phone charging AND radar or other 12V accessory.

I gotta remember to stick the little rubber plug in if it looks like rain as it's not "protected" under the windscreen like the ciggie plug.

I'm working on a Techmount to mount the radar detector, camera, cellphone, whatever (interchangeable heads on a 1" ball; all machined aluminum, lifetime warranty on all of it) The Concours doesn't have traditional round handlebars so mounting ANYTHING is a challenge; Techmount sells a unique bracket that goes between the handlebar risers that solves the problem in an attractive functional way EVEN IF the ignition key gets "hidden" a bit. ( for EVERY conceivable farkle mount for EVERY bike - including Connies, Bimmers & others without round bars)

An innovative (I thought) gas tank mount I ordered ( interferes with opening the glovebox unless I mount it sideways....which I might...

I may keep it anyway as the glove box is all but useless. Melts sunglasses, shuts down cellphones, killed a Nikon Coolpix completely....

But the good news: I learned on the Concours Owner's Forum I can wrap some seasoned short ribs in foil, put them in the Connie's convection glove box, and after only 2 tankfuls enjoy a delicious road-cooked meal.

Someone actually measured, using an IR gun, the temp in the box after riding awhile. 119F. Probably why they got rid of the box in 2010. No way to insulate it OR get enough cooling air to it....

But of course even the Techmount install doesn't go as planned, the radar detector sits below the level of the windshield so I'm having to order a taller stem..... and praying... oh well, can at least use it for cellphone if I can't get it up high enough...

The radar detector, that is...

Got a magnetic map bag that I HOPED would allow me to use the Ipad on the tank-top as a map while on tour.

Discovered taking this picture it ain't gonna work. . Gonna have to cut down my big tank bag which has "wings" with far more serious magnets. .....dang it!

Next will be a pair of horns that are guaranteed by the Chinese mfr. to wake the dead. (Tested in graveyards) Last week a company van decided he wanted my lane. I've had enough of praying my pathetic little horn will awaken a motorist with the windows closed and Pandora cranked up.


Aftermarket horn installation tips: if you add monster horns be sure and run 10 awg wire from the battery and use a a relay driven from the existing horn to switch it; ; these things can pull 15-20 amps. That will melt your horn switch if you wire it directly, or even use the feed to the FACTORY horns. As an EE, I can tell you 12AWG will "Suffice" but...10AWG is even better for a hi amperage application like this. For one thing the horn will be as loud as it possibly can be since there will be significantly less voltage drop in the 10AWG wiring... So you might get 13.8 instead of 13.5 volts AT the horn... on headlights, driving lights that makes a HUGE difference in brightness, btw.

I'm working on some sort of deflectors/shields to keep the Connie from cooking my boots/ankles, a well known problem with this make; remedied in 2010 by Kawasaki, mine's a 2009 of course... some foam shields were being sold on Ebay; of course they're discontinued now. Maybe if he'd asked a more reasonable price instead of $50 for two $5 pieces of foam cut to shape...

I'm still working on integrating the radar detector (V1) with the Sena Bluetooth headset; this may take 1-2 "extra' boxes like a Bluetooth transmitter, Valentine Remote Audio box, or even a J&M Integratr to integrate all the audio sources BEFORE they go to the headset - so I don't give up a music channel just to hear radar tones... damn Sena!

I fabb'd a custom cargo net with two permanently attached great with a bedroll, additional packd, etc. When the bags are on the Connie there's hardly any places to secure a small net so the bungees reach down and grab onto lower parts of the bike...

And all of a sudden it has started feeling like MY bike.... instead of a Kawasaki --- including the nasty scratches from where I finally dropped it after more than a year of ownership :(

I'm not gonna add chrome for chrome's sake...and I'm sure people will ridicule me for my ridiculous looking cup holder, but....I'll be drinking ice cold water while they're suffering lukewarm... and since I often ride TO Phoenix in the summertime.... it was 118 last Wednesday.......

What's your latest farkle?

865 Posts
Well, for me it's what I pull off.

Pulled the OG bars and installed some renthal dirt bike bars.

Pulled of front fender.

Pulled of front signals.

Pulled off one mirror since I need one to be legal.

Gunna pull off the rear fender and either paint it or ditch it all together if I can find a way to nicely relocate my plate and tail light.

I don't like the brick of a tail light I have.

17,871 Posts
Adding stuff, or taking it off, helps to make a bike your own.

Modifying stuff, even with duct tape, scrap metal, and hardware store screws, makes YOU, even more so, the person that made your bike your own.

Take pride in your ride.

ZAMM Fanatic
2,730 Posts
Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Here's the Techmount I've been yammering about endlessly

Without this, mounting ANYTHING on a Concours14 is an exercise in frustration.

Isn't that a killer picture??? I get lucky about once a month. Sometimes I take a good picture also.

You can buy, from Powersportsus , Revzilla, Superstore..... top plates that mount onto the ball for any conceivable camera, phone, GoPro, laptop, GPS, etc. Including a DOUBLE plate for mounting TWO items.

As I mentioned, my issue is one of height, and hopefully a 3" longer "shaft" will put my radar detector up where it can "see' through the windscreen.

I've purchased a camera mount, radar detector mount, GoPro and rainproof Iphone case. Techmount has just come out with a next-gen cellphone/GPS holder that supposedly grips 'em the way King Kong did Fay Wray -- firm enough to ABSOLUTELY prevent a drop but gentle enough not to damage the, ahh, software???

Oh, and I've been told they're ABOUT to come out with a cupholder. Put all my redneck-engineering to shame :(

Aging & Worn
4,516 Posts
The previous owner of my bike, had a bandanna tied to the passenger backrest frame. When I bought the bike, it was removed.

So I put one there of my own, to personalize it in a non-intrusive way.

Removing the saddle bags (for me) was a "it's mine" moment. (Didn't want the saddle bags on there anyway, hiding the rear end).

On a previous bike I had put tassel grips on the handlebars. Haven't done that to THIS one yet, and probably won't.

Added the Battery Tender Jr. quick-connect leads, replacing the existing ones.

Removed and sorted the Tool Kit supplies, to streamline it to my liking.

Added a rear-seat luggage bag.

Had some POM upgrades to the brakes, chain & sprockets, etc..

That's all.........for now.


4,169 Posts
I have been adding more appearance and performance things to my Vision than I ever did on any previous bike. I think my willingness to go there makes it my own, not what I actually do. When it is just another bike that never seems to happen.
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